No, I am not taking about Malcom Gladwell’s bestseller. The much hated (and loved) html tag, <Blink> has finally met it’s maker. We all had our fun, we made texts of various sizes and colors blink and blink all over the screen. Almost a decade back, it was one of the first tags I learned.
The element had already been removed from Internet Explorer, was never implemented in Chrome and was ignored by most browser-makers because it never made it into a W3C HTML spec.
Like many bad decisions, blinking was conceived after a long night of drinking, with Netscape’s founding engineer Lou Montulli lamenting the limitations of Lynx in a bar.
… At some point in the evening I mentioned that it was sad that Lynx was not going to be able to display many of the HTML extensions that we were proposing, I also pointed out that the only text style that Lynx could exploit given its environment was blinking text. We had a pretty good laugh at the thought of blinking text, and talked about blinking this and that and how absurd the whole thing would be. […] Saturday morning rolled around and I headed into the office only to find what else but, blinking text. It was on the screen blinking in all its glory, and in the browser. How could this be, you might ask? It turns out that one of the engineers liked my idea so much that he left the bar sometime past midnight, returned to the office and implemented the blink tag overnight. He was still there in the morning and quite proud of it.
Don’t ignore the fact that in the mid-1990s web pages were rather dull. Fonts didn’t display at all, ActiveX didn’t exist, inline multimedia was in its infancy and Java was still a new kid on the block. Blinking texts gave life to webpages for years.
If there is a <blink> fan out there, you can bring back <blink> from it’s grave using this extension for Chrome.
Long live the blink..